Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Shephard

David Shephard

Chief Executive Officer, Readiness Resource Group

David Shepherd is Chief Executive Officer for Readiness Resource Group, a veteran-owned small business founded in 2007 and based in Las Vegas, NV. RRG supports national preparedness, enterprise resilience and infrastructure crisis and risk programs. RRG execute programs in planning, training and exercises for the critical infrastructure; test and evaluation of technologies for emergency responders; assessments and technology integration for preparedness and prevention mission support; and develop and integrate special technologies for counter-intrusion and counter-surveillance applications. RRG provide operational know-how and technical assistance to enhance infrastructure protection and national preparedness with emphasis on the nexus between public safety and critical infrastructure owners/operators. From requirements analysis to systems integration, RRG advances the emergency, crisis and risk management mission with integrity and ingenuity in service. From 1999 to 2006, Mr. Shepherd was the Executive Director of Security at Venetian Resort Hotel Casino responsible for physical security, background investigations, terrorism, EMT coverage, construction security and special investigation. The Venetian is the fourth largest hotel in the world and includes ten million square feet of space in suites, shopping mall, night clubs, restaurants, theaters, convention space and casino. Operated the Emergency Command Center on natural disasters, life safety, terrorism and health concerns. During this same period Mr. Shepherd was also an instructor at University of Nevada at Las Vegas (UNLV) where he instructed undergraduate students in Criminal Investigations, and Criminal Evidence. He was a guest instructor for the Institute of Security Studies, Masters Program, specifically focusing upon Commercial Facilities preventive measures and Emergency Command Center Operations. Mr. Shepherd worked for the Federal Bureau of Investigation from 1975 to 1999 where he had twenty-two years experience in SWAT operations as Team Leader and Coordinator in domestic and foreign terrorism, kidnappings, extortions, fugitives, violent crimes and narcotics. He coordinated operations with local, state, federal, military (Navy Seals, Delta Force, Special Operations) and International law enforcement operations. He operated the Forward Command Center (FCC) for nuclear incidents (Nevada Test Site), and established aircraft hijacking exercises at McCarran International Airport and supervised criminal investigations in hostage situations and major criminal violations, such as armored car robberies, telemarketing frauds and arrested FBI Top Ten Fugitives over the course of his career. Before working for the FBI, Mr. Shepherd served as an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps where he was the physical fitness coordinator at Officer Candidate School, Quantico, VA. Mr. Shepherd was responsible to train officer candidates in the obstacle course, confidence course, bayonet fighting, hand-to-hand combat and all aspects of physical fitness. He graduated from the University of Utah with a B.S. in Marketing; from Golden Gate University with an M.B.A. in Management; and from Golden Gate University with an M.P.A. in Criminal Justice.

Mr. Shephard can be contacted at 702.685.0164 or shepherd@readinessresource.com

Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.